Mt. Blue’s Eli Yeaton makes a left-footed turn on his way to a first-place finish at the KVAC Alpine ski championships at Titcomb. Sun Journal photo by Brewster Burns

Eli Yeaton is certainly a model of consistency.

The Mt. Blue senior was strong throughout his final season on the slopes for the Cougars, pulling off a near-sweep at the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference championships, edging Colby Van Decker of Oxford Hills (1:19.00) for the slalom title, and finished just behind Vandecker for second (1:40.32) in the giant slalom.

For his efforts, Yeaton is the Central Maine Boys Alpine Skier of the Year. This is the second consecutive year Yeaton has earned the honor.

Yeaton said entering the season, his goal was to be as consistent as possible for each race.

“That was kind of my goal for the year, I wanted to be on the podium all year long, be as consistent as possible in the top (of the standings),” Yeaton said. “Definitely feels good to have hit that for just about the entire year. I’m quite happy with that.”

His best effort certainly came at the KVACs. Though Yeaton was happy with taking home the slalom title, he was particularly proud of effort in the giant slalom.

“That was definitely a big one for me,” Yeaton said. “Especially the first run. I was coming out pretty early, I knew (Van Decker) was going to have a heck of a run. So being right there with him, first run, I knew I felt really good about that. Second run, I was a little bit back, but still, that was probably the best GS I really skied that year. I was mentally ready to go. I wasn’t worried about what happens if I’m get going too fast, I was like ‘How much faster can I go in the middle of a turn?'”

Yeaton added that he wished he could re-do the Class A championships, when he finished fourth in the slalom (1:35.47) and seventh in the giant slalom (1:25.35).

“There were definitely some things I look back and (feel like) I shot myself in the foot,” Yeaton said. “The (giant slalom) at states, nearly falling on both runs. It put me back a little bit, so that’s something I look back on. Slalom, going from third to fourth (at states) right off the podium, I wasn’t too happy about that. But, still pretty decent, especially how we finished (as a team).”

Yeaton’s effort helped lead the Cougars (1,498 points) to a second-place finish as a team, 57 points behind Falmouth (1,555 points).

“Maybe he wanted to be a little higher (in the standings) at states,” Mt. Blue Alpine coach Mark Cyr said. “But he did what he had to do. We ended up coming in second for that. He’s a team player.”

Cyr credits Yeaton as a strong skier.

“His big strength is his strength,” Cyr said. “That kid is strong. He’s not a big kid by any means – he’s somewhat small – but he’s a strong young man. Very athletic and very strong.”

Yeaton said he improved his mental preparation for races this season, as well.

“I was in a little bit of a head space in previous years, especially in GS,” Yeaton said. “You get that speed and you go to a bigger mountain, and you get a little shaky when you (do your first run). This year, I was more ready for it. I was able to push it, keep striving for (better times).”

A senior, Yeaton plans to attend Maine Maritime Academy in the fall.

 

Dave Dyer – 621-5640

[email protected]

Twitter: @Dave_Dyer


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